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Raising Resilient Children

October 11th, 2018 by Cara Johnson

Children face all sorts of challenges, from academics to braces and learning to navigate difficult social situations. Resilient kids are flexible, they are good problem solvers, and they are better equipped to deal with uncertainty. So how do we help our children to become resilient? 

In her article, 10 Tips for Raising Resilient Kids, Margarita Tartakovski reminds us that “Resilience isn’t a birthright. It can be taught.” Most parents are naturally inclined to protect their children from uncertainty and adversity – but this can sometimes be counterproductive. 

Her top three strategies include: 

  1. Don’t accommodate your child’s every need. All parents want to shelter their children from fear, but overprotecting your children will only fuel their anxiety, not teach them to overcome it. 
  2. Don’t try to eliminate every possible risk, instead teach them to understand and be prepared for risk. 
  3. Teach your children to problem solve. If your child is worried about something from sleep away camp to a final exam, brainstorming coping strategies is a wonderful way to support your child without solving the problem for them. 

To learn more read the full article, 10 Tips for Raising Resilient Kids,at https://psychcentral.com/lib/10-tips-for-raising-resilient-kids/

Bringing up resilient kids can be challenging, especially when faced with the tantrums and outbursts that are part of each child’s development. It can be challenging not to view these outbursts as a problem to be solved – but as a learning opportunity. Emily Popek’s recent article, To Raise Resilient Kids, Be a Resilient Parent, urges parents to examine their response to challenging behaviors and provides some great tips for navigating these interactions. 

  1. Set boundaries with compassion: holding firm to the boundary you have established with your child can be one of the hardest aspects of parenting and can lead to some of the most explosive behavior. Children will always test boundaries, but well-defined boundaries that are consistently upheld ultimately provide a profound sense of security to your child. 
  2. Get curious: We often ask children “Why did you do that?” Sometimes it makes sense to ask yourself in turn, “Why am I responding this way?” This is especially important if your child is engaging in a behavior that is specifically designed to push your buttons… 

For more insights and reading opportunities read the full article by Emily Popek in the New York Times: https://www.nytimes.com/2018/03/28/well/family/to-raise-resilient-kids-be-a-resilient-parent.html

Not enough? For further reading we suggest the book Raising Resilient Children by Dr. Robert Brooks and Dr. Sam Goldstein (McGraw Hill Eduction, 2002) which is available on Amazon


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